Photo © Cicala Filmworks. Used with permission.
A founder of the production companies Cicala Filmworks and Silver Shepherd, Schaefer has worked in independent film and television for 15 years. His films have premiered and won awards at festivals such as Berlin and SxSW, and been successfully released theatrically, via cable outfits such as HBO and the Sundance Channel, on iTunes and DVD.
In the past six years he has written, directed and/or produced eight feature films, among them MY LAST DAY WITHOUT YOU (2011), FIRST LADY, Olaf Johannesson's THE AMAZING TRUTH ABOUT QUEEN RAQUELA, and ARRANGED. On these and other projects, he worked with Academy Award winner Melissa Leo, Ali Larter, Michael Imperioli, Zoe Lister-Jones, William Sadler, Nicole Beharie, Ken Duken, and many more.
Schaefer has numerous projects in active development, including a TV series with Sony Pictures Television. He is currently directing a feature-length documentary about the life and work of Poet Laureate, two-time Pulitzer winner, and environmental activist W.S. Merwin.
Recent awards include: Best Independent Film at the Black Reel Awards (2012), Best Producer at Brooklyn Film Festival (2011), Grand Prize for Best Film at the Skip City International Film Festival in Japan (2008), the Teddy Award for Best Feature Film at the Berlin International Film Festival (2008), Best Producer Award at the Brooklyn International Film Festival (2007), Best Film/Audience Awards at the Berkshire International Film Festival and the Washington Jewish Film Festival (2007), Best Screenwriter at the Hamptons Film Festival (2005), Grand Prize in Digital Filmmaking from Panasonic and Apple (2004), and the New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Screenwriting (2003).
Schaefer graduated from Wesleyan University, and studied as a Fulbright Scholar in Europe. An active member of the Writers Guild of America (WGA), he's repped by LA-based Industry Entertainment. He and his family live in Haiku, Hawaii.